Dead By Midnight
Marc and Sophie Hunter, Gabe and Kat Rossiter, Holly Andris and the rest of the I-Team gang find themselves in the same historic Denver hotel celebrating the approach of Christmas at different holiday parties. What starts out as a fun winter evening with friends soon becomes a brutal fight to survive when the hotel is taken over by a group of ruthless narco-terrorists who will stop at nothing to get what they want.
On the outside, Julian Darcangelo, Zach McBride, Nick Andris and others join together with the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team to free their friends, knowing that if they fail, the people they love will be...
Dead by Midnight.
Featuring cameo appearances by the men of the FBI Hostage Rescue Team, a series by New York Times bestselling author Kaylea Cross.
Read an excerpt below...
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Marc stopped, fought to catch his breath, pressing a hand against the painful graze on his ribs. His fingers came away bloody. There was nothing he could do about that now. He had bigger problems. He could just hear the bad guys talking to one another somewhere on the roof above. He wouldn't be able to sneak up on them breathing like he'd just run up seven flights of stairs.
That's why they call it FAT Tire, Hunter.
Yeah, too much beer—and too little time in the gym.
He'd ditched the idea of taking an elevator when the doors had opened with a loud ding that had made every asshole in the lobby look up. The fuckers had started shooting. He'd been lucky to get out of there alive.
He'd had to take off his fancy dress shoes because the soles made so much noise, every step he took echoing in the stairwell. Now he was running around with a pistol in his hand and wearing nothing but socks, tuxedo pants, a starched white shirt stained red with his own blood—and a fine black tie.
Just like James fucking Bond.
His heartbeat and respiration slowed, Sophie's lingering scent reminding him with every breath exactly what was at stake tonight. He did his best to put her out of his mind. He wouldn't be able to help her or anyone else if he didn't focus.
Sheridan will keep her safe. She'll be okay.
So now what?
He leaned back against the cold concrete wall, mulled over the possibilities.
There were four of them, and he had four bullets. Even if he snuck up on them, he doubted he'd be able to squeeze off four rounds with absolute accuracy using only a pistol before one of them lit him up. What he needed was a way to eliminate all four of them at once without giving himself away.
Dream on, buddy.
He slowly climbed the last flight of stairs, stopping to the left of the open door, frigid night air pouring in from the darkness. He glanced around the corner.
He stepped outside. It wasn't as dark as he'd thought it would be, security lights on the parapets casting an eerie yellow glow. He glanced around, pistol raised, finger on the trigger. The hotel's triangular roof was a maze of external ductwork, enormous ventilation and air conditioning units, what looked like a greenhouse and...
Keeping low, he made his way around the bulkhead and along a long line of ductwork. A movement in the darkness. Voices.
All four of them were gathered at the south end of the building, near its prow where The Palace overlooked the star-shaped intersection of Broadway, Seventeenth, and Court Place, with its public park and bus stops. They were bent over something with flashlights. One of them moved, giving Marc a glance.
A Ma Deuce.
The bastards had a fucking Ma Deuce—a Browning M2 machine gun. If they managed to get that thing up and running, they would have enough firepower to take down targets up to two thousand yards away.
Marc's SWAT team would be fish in a barrel.
He took a moment to think, trying to ignore the fact that he was fucking freezing, the frigid wind cutting right through him. He made his way back along the ductwork to a place he felt was secure, then pulled out his cell phone and sent Irving a quick text.
Four perps on roof setting up a Browning M2 .50 cal. May have RPGs, etc. I'm going to try to take them out.
If he failed, at least Irving and Marc's teams would be warned.
Quickly and quietly, he retraced his path along the ductwork, moving in closer this time, trying to make up for the limited range of his pistol. He tried to line up a shot, felt himself shivering.
Get a grip, Hunter!
He willed his body to relax, surrendered to the cold, then set it out of his mind.
He lined up his shot and...squeezed the trigger.
Shouting at one another, the others grabbed their weapons, one aiming into the darkness and spraying bullets in Marc's general direction, rounds slamming into the ductwork around him with a dull thwack thwack thwack thwack thwack.
Bent low, he ran, taking cover behind some AC vents and peering out at the three men, ignoring the vibration of his cell phone. Two perps had gone back to work on the M2, while the third stood sentry, rifle in his hands, cell phone in his hand, thumb moving over the keys. He was probably calling for backup.
Well, Marc couldn't let him get away with that. He took aim, fired again.
Another one down.
The others had laid their weapons aside to work on the Ma Deuce.
Marc saw his chance.
He rushed them, stopping to fire at the first one to aim a rifle at him.
Fueled by a surge of adrenaline, Marc dove for cover.